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The Cadet Corps (in Russian: Kadetskiy Korpus, Кадетский Корпус) is an admissions-based all boys military academy which prepared boys to become commissioned officers. Boys between the ages of 8 and 15 were enrolled. It was founded in Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire in 1731 by Empress Anna. The term of education was seven years. All instructors had a military rank, and taught a full program of military preparation. In 1766 Catherine the Great's educational reforms broadened the curriculum to include the sciences, philosophy, ethics, history, and international law.

A graduate from the corps became a junker and had prime candidacy for a military career.

During the October Revolution and the 1917-23 Russian Civil War, cadets and junkers unanimously supported the White movement (Anti-bolshevik). A small portion of cadets were able to evacuate with the White Army towards the end of Russian Civil War to western countries. Subsequently, the Soviet Government executed or imprisoned all[citation needed] surviving cadets to Siberian GULAG slave labor camps. Fifteen years later, according to Alexander Solzhenitsyn, none remained alive and free inside USSR.

During World War II a number of White emigre cadets joined the Russian Corps, feeling it was a means of continuing the battle against the Bolshevik regime.

After World War II, with the emigration of cadets to the United States, Canada, Argentina, and Australia, White emigre cadet corps ceased to function. A cadet union was formed to unite the graduates of the cadet corps.


The "Cadet Roll Call", a White emigre cadet periodical from 1950s.

Many cadets who escaped alive formed cadet corps in other countries, most notably in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (Bela Crkva), where they received the patronage of Alexander I of Yugoslavia - himself a graduate from the St. Petersburg cadet corps.

After the fall of the USSR, cadet corps were re-established in Russia.

See also[]

A memorial for fallen Cadets in Nanuet, NY.

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